I posted a question on Stack Overflow here. The point of contention is when I mentioned They do not say why.

This was deemed to be close to being argumentative.

The discussion took place in the comments section of the question.

Am I missing something here?

  • Near as I can tell, the S.Lott person is the one who's being argumentative, finding offense where there is none. I don't see anything wrong with your statement of your question.
    – Marti
    May 26, 2011 at 13:46
  • 3
    @Nai: Your original post doesn’t seem argumentative to me; some of your replies in comments do, though (eg “…I've noticed in your replies, you always take the path of making the OP sound either lazy or retarded. Sure you've got lots of experience. Dont forget you were once a beginner too buddy.”) and I’m guessing S.Lott took offence to that and then dragged the original question in more than quite makes sense.
    – PLL
    May 26, 2011 at 13:54
  • 1
    @PLL yeah but he took offense before I made that comment though.
    – Anonymous
    May 26, 2011 at 14:01
  • @Martha: So, why you prefer to write comment instead of answer for this on-topic question? I found it so hard to answer.
    – Anonymous
    May 26, 2011 at 14:03
  • @Martha, because it is very subjective; you can not classify it directly into the faq example of donts but this is (in present form) much better for meta (and the answers would be more pertinent there); on the other hand to make it more objective and linguistic oriented it should be rewritten so that subjective context is removed and that all relevant linguistic context is also shown here (with no need to browse external sites to get the full scope of the question).
    – Unreason
    May 26, 2011 at 14:11
  • @Martha: Aha, you'd like to use a better logic and also your followers.
    – Anonymous
    May 26, 2011 at 14:32

2 Answers 2


They do not say why is likely being taken as accusatory, i.e. it accuses someone or a group of not completely answering a question. This can be seen as argumentative.

  • I don't see any accusation in your original question, but what SO readers may see as argumentative is an attempt to preempt the "you could look it up" reply.
    – Anonymous
    May 26, 2011 at 14:52
  • I disagree completely regarding it being accusatory in any way. It is a merely a statement of fact (despite the inappropriate '?') that they don't say why. In addition, the statement is not without context: the sentence which follows asks for clarification of why, and it is on a Q&A site.
    – Anonymous
    May 26, 2011 at 18:10
  • @horatio: statements, whether true or false, can be taken as accusatory. Matt is saying that pointing out that "they do not say why" could be construed as pointing out something that -should- have been done, a failure, and therefore accusatory and/or argumentative. It's not blatantly aggressive. But there's room so that it can be interpreted that way.
    – Mitch
    May 26, 2011 at 20:17
  • Yes, let me amend that.
    – Meta Ellen
    May 26, 2011 at 20:58

Can someone tell me why this guy perceived me as being argumentative?

It's because you posted something to the internet. Writing text and making it available on the internet is, by definition, argumentative, especially so on a questions and answers forum.

If it weren't for contention and debate, the internet would have no purpose. Well, not more than one purpose.

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